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Sterling in Senior Squad for England

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It was nice midweek when we were talking about patience and development and making sure that young talent was eased into action, but that was like, four days ago or something. Back then we could talk about what's going to happen in the future, but now we're actually in the future.

And in the future Raheem Sterling gets a call-up to the senior squad for England ahead of their qualifier against the Ukraine tomorrow after Daniel Sturridge and Theo Walcott had to withdraw through illness. There's still enough bodies in the squad that Sterling's inclusion seems purely for cover, with James Milner and Alex Oxlaide-Chamberlain starting in Moldova to decent effect and Roy Hodgson proving allergic to having too many attacking players in his side at the same time.

That it comes less than a week after Brendan Rodgers spoke openly about the English tendency to elevate players too quickly and then watch them flame out in a blaze of mediocrity is either hilarious or horrifying, but it's at least tempered by Hodgson's acknowledgement that Sterling's inclusion is not about playing now. If it proves to be otherwise there might be cause for increased concern, and Liverpool supporters can be forgiven for not taking anything Hodgson says at face value, although in this case there's nothing to do other than hope Raheem Sterling is indeed brought along slowly and that tomorrow he's little more than a warm body for the bench.

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